Smoke Free Air Act; created. (HB1952)

Introduced By

Del. Harvey Morgan (R-Gloucester)

Progress

Introduced
Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law

Description

Virginia Indoor Clean Air Act; smoking in restaurants; civil penalties. Moves the law restricting smoking in buildings and other enclosed areas from the title relating to local government (15.2) to the title relating to health (32.1) and prohibits smoking indoors in most buildings or enclosed areas frequented by the public. Exceptions are provided for (i) private homes, private residences, and private automobiles, and home-based businesses, unless used in conjunction with a licensed child care, adult day care, or health care facility; (ii) certain private functions held in public facilities; (iii) hotel or motel rooms not clearly designated as "nonsmoking" rooms that are offered for lease or rent to the public; (iv) specialty tobacco stores; and (v) tobacco manufacturers. Signs stating "Warning: Smoking Permitted" must be posted by the proprietor of any exempt building or area when smoking is allowed. Any person who continues to smoke in an area in which smoking is prohibited will be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $100 for the first offense, and $250 for subsequent offenses. Failure to comply with the smoking restrictions will subject proprietors to a $200 civil penalty for the first offense and $500 for subsequent offenses. Read the Bill »

Outcome

Bill Has Failed

History

DateAction
01/05/2007Committee
01/05/2007Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/10/07 072423428
01/05/2007Referred to Committee on General Laws
01/10/2007Assigned GL sub: #3 ABC/Gaming (Gear)
01/16/2007Impact statement from DPB (HB1952)
02/06/2007Left in General Laws

Duplicate Bills

The following bills are identical to this one: HB2005, HB2245 and HB2689.

Comments

Troy W. Bowie writes:

I think this is a great start, we need to keep smoke out of all places!

Jenni Connolly writes:

Me and my family completely support this bill. As an asthma sufferer who's main trigger is smoke, my access is limited to many restaurants and all bars. This Bill would grant me freedoms I have not had in years. I would be able to vacation in my own state instead of traveling to FL, MA and otehr smoke-free states.

Jenni Connolly writes:

HB2689: HB1952 :HB2005 all seem to be identical Bills. I support any and all legislation that bans smoking from public places including Bars, Restaurants and Public commercial enterprise (other than specific Tobbacco related businesses)

Jenni Connolly writes:

HB2689: HB1952 :HB2005 all seem to be identical Bills. I support any and all legislation that bans smoking from public places including Bars, Restaurants and Public commercial enterprise (other than specific Tobbacco related businesses)

Ranzy Gammal writes:

I urge you to move this bill forward. It benefits the majority of Virginians who do not smoke and wish to preserve their health. Countries who have had liberal smoking policies have made the step to protect their citizens with smoke-free laws and I hope that Virginia takes the same.

Darcy Terry writes:

I totally appreciate your views on smoke free environments in public places and I know that's the trend. The effort to eliminate smoking in public places comes from a caring and compassionate aim of government to increase the health of the population as well as to eliminate the dire consequences of second hand smoke. And granted it bothers people with asthma and a general dislike of the smell.

I personally don't believe that second hand smoke posseses all of the health concerns that some say that it does. Being exposed to it daily may bring long term health issues - passive exposure to it is basically like standing around a campfire. I know that there are many on the anti-smoking bandwagon that exaggerate the detrimental effects - but I will grant the point that it is generally bad for someone exposed to it in confined places over a long period of time. I also won't try to argue the fact that smoking is bad for people in general... we all know its bad for you but still there are those who choose to do it.

I disagree however with the constant chipping away of individual freedoms of Americans who would like to go through their day without the constant intervention of a "big brother" government and regs designed to control behaviors of the populace. Our founding fathers wanted Americans to be able to wake up and decide what they will do each day. Americans basic freedoms are eroding under this nanny state and more and more people are less and less free to pursue what makes them happy - good or bad.

Lately there's ordinances in some towns and cities where citizens can't even smoke in their cars or outside of doorways or on the streets. I believe this is government gone too far. I understand the intentions but I feel there are larger issues of personal freedoms at stake and many of these measures have simply gone too far - not just on the smoking issue - the red tape and restrictions we all live with everyday are mostly well intentioned but erode personal freedoms and intrude in American's lives. Could not the restaurant owners decide for their own businesses whether they will allow smoking or not based on their own rights to run their business the way they wish to run it and according to their own views?
Other points of view are excepted and appreciated.

Waldo Jaquith writes:

Being exposed to it daily may bring long term health issues - passive exposure to it is basically like standing around a campfire.

Well, a campfire in which we're burning carcinogens and a highly-addictive substance rather than, say, wood. :)

Thank you for your statements on open discussion and polite disagreement -- it's precisely what we need more of in this world.

Mary Colter writes:

I ditto what Jenni Connolly is saying. Add to her list HB2422. Let's get one of these bills passed that will ban smoke in public places, please.

Mike Kelley writes:

I urge that this bill be passed and implemented as quickly as possible. If smokers want to ruin their own health, they are welcome to do so away from the non-smoking public. It should be kept out of and away from the doorways of building commonly used by the public. It has been well established time and again that such ordinances have no negative effect on business profits, and if they have any impact at all it tends to be positive. This ordinance would be nothing but positive and be a de facto increase in the freedom of the majority of citizens who do not care to burn their lungs away.